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2001-11-12

Anton Pavlovich Chekov
B. 1.29.1860 Taganrog, Russia / D. 7.14.1904 Badenweiler, Germany
Tuberculosis

The Rockaways. Cops and ex-cops and firemen and their childhood brides and children occupying for generations—as they tend to do here—all the choicest territory by the sea.
The sea, the sea! Community keeps on eroding—the social fabric’s fraying around the holes and seams if not already fallen into moth-soiled strips and thread dust. Far beyond repair.
Maybe people are just harder to be around now—to be near—than people used to be. Back before there were so many full-fledged individuals going about in a prime-time-ready state of display.
Sounding off about their conditions, emotions, suspicions—bearing witness and off-the rack tidings— Look up!
Too late. It may be more wearing on the nervous system than a body’s built to bear.
And all the while you’re remembering that nuclear warhead they had hanging on the wall throughout the whole first act. Out by the playground at Logan-shaken Point Shirley, when the sun and noise would turn the tidal mud into a vast plain of slick honeycomb tiles—how the shadows of the terrifying jumbo jets would catch and pool up in the cracks between them.

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